In my opinion, the scariest argument comes from the Christian fundamentalist movement. Those that believe that the End Times described in the Book of Revelations are near see climate change as a non-issue. If you believe that God will end the world in your lifetime, then efforts for conservation, reducing pollution, and the like would be a complete waste of time.
As an atheist, I am of course not convinced by this argument. However, I can certainly see how above idea would be convincing to believers who are willing to accept a wide range of claims without evidence to support them. With the number of Evangelical Christians estimated at well over two million and climbing, and with 76% of the US population identifying as Christian, I see this orientation as the single biggest threat to climate change initiatives. I know from experience that you cannot talk someone out of their faith, so no matter how much evidence scientists compile about the threat of climate change, it will do little if anything to change the fundamentalist mindset on the environment.
For giggles, the link below contains a fun fact sheet pairing arguemnts against climate change and the science that debunks them.
Uhm, well, nothing really. If you look into most of their arguments, you almost always find important information they left out. It’s not hard to be fooled, ether, because climate science is incredibly complicated. Check out the first link in my citations to an amazing website that lists all of the major “skeptic” arguments and refutes them.
But if I had to pick something, I think the most convincing argument is “Well, even if climate change is human-caused, it will be hard to do anything about it.” That’s very true. Even if the United States and other developed countries did a massive overhaul and switched to clean energy in the next decade, there’s still the developing world. Coal is cheap and easy to use, so poorer countries are burning it in staggering quantities as they industrialize. There’s no way they can afford green energy in the near future short of some miracle. And we can’t very well tell them they’re not allowed to industrialize and improve their standard of living, when we (the developed countries) are the ones who started this problem in the first place.
Of course, it’s still important to fight climate change as much as we can. The more we let it go unchecked, the more damage will be done, and if we don’t do anything the Earth will eventually be unfit for any human life. But I think at this point it’s safe to say we’re already committed to some very serious damage.
In my opinion, the most convincing argument by critics of the climate change theory is that the science has become politically driven (and funded) before the research has reached maturity. Scandals such as the IPCC/Climategate scandal (see links below) cause many people to question the quality of the research behind the climate change hypothesis.
Christopher Monckton is a skeptic about climate change. Find his ideas here: http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/monckton/.
I’m not convinced, but a lot of people against the climate change theory argue that this is part of a natural warming cycle, as the Earth periodically has warming and cooling phases. The correlations between humans, our technology, the industrial revolution, and the increased temperatures are too strong.
This BBC article (although a bit old…dated 2007) presents, in my opinion, a great outline of some common skeptics’ arguments against global warming and their counterarguments. Highly recommend taking a look:
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